“Oh goodness! Are you sure? I’m starting to tear up here.”
“I’ve never had this in my life.”
It started with a random act of kindness. It’s a gift that sets off a bittersweet success story reminding us all to never judge a book by its cover.
A Man Gives a Homeless a Stunning Gift
The man was standing at an intersection in Euclid, Ohio, holding a cardboard sign. Maybe, just maybe someone will stop to help.
Out of nowhere, a stranger jogs over to him and introduces himself as Josh.
“Just trying to make enough to get me something to eat,” the man whose name is Thomas replies.
Then Josh hands Thomas $100, which brings him to the brink of tears. After Thomas hugs him, Josh responds, “Nice meeting you. I hope you can, you know, have good use of that money.”
“It will be sir,” responds Thomas.
With that, he packs up his big tote bag and leaves the intersection, walking like someone on a mission.
But to where?
A Homeless Man’s Mission
Cameras follow Thomas as he treks several miles through side streets and intersections, his pace hurried. Finally, he stops at a local liquor store.
Of course he is.
Sure enough, he walks out with a full black garbage bag, probably with booze for a night to celebrate hitting the lotto.
Packing his tote bag, Thomas continues his frenzied pace through the neighborhood. But where is he going?!
Finally, he makes his way to a park, walking towards a couple of people he seems to know. He reaches into a bag and gives one of them a plastic bag with something in it, but not clear exactly what.
With no time to waste, Thomas quickly gathers his things and continues his frantic foot journey.
He then arrives at another park, this time with more people, including a little girl in a hooded sweatshirt. Once again, he stops, rests his bag on the bench and reaches into his bag.
That’s when it’s very clear what Thomas’ real motivation is.
A Homeless Man’s Touching Story
Reaching into the bag, Thomas pulls out food. Thomas used the windfall to feed his friends.
Suddenly, Josh comes out of nowhere to confront him. He’s actually famous social media influencer Josh Paler. Mostly known for his petty pranks, Paler instead uses his camera to see how a homeless person would spend $100 when given to them.
And so, after giving a teary Thomas the money, he followed him on his journey around town.
When he confronts him, Josh has a confession.
“I feel like I owe you apologies ’cause I… I… you went to a liquor store, right? Earlier?” he says.
“Oh, you thought I was gonna get all smacked up drunk, huh?” Thomas replied.
Josh is then shocked to find out that Thomas doesn’t know any of the people he gave food to.
“But there’s things money can’t buy. My own… I get a happiness out of what I’m doing,” said Thomas.
“You just touched my heart, you know? This is another…$100 bucks,” said Josh.
A panicked Thomas starts saying “No, no, no,” but it’s too late.
That’s a rich reward but this story goes much deeper than dollars.
How One Homeless Man Teaches Us That Riches Are Skin Deep
Josh then asks Thomas about how he ended up homeless. His story is heartbreaking as his heart is big.
He says that he was living with his parents when his stepfather got cancer and was getting hospice. However when insurance didn’t cover it, Thomas quit his job to care for him.
Then tragically, two weeks later his mother passed away from kidney failure. When her building was sold, Thomas found himself on the streets, where he’d been for a few months.
Yet there he was with a brave face, finding the motivation to help others with the little he had. He had a moving message for Josh and the viewers.
“And there is a lot of people there that are just victims of circumstances… It could be a divorce and one thing leads to another the man sells his boat, his home…”
In the end, he says, what sets our sail is in the heart.
“You somehow you would be on a seam, and you meet… bumping the good people that’s all there is to it. You’re on a different path.”
Remember that when it comes to kindness, you don’t have to be a big spender to get an even bigger payoff.
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